Monday 12 March 2012

Active Controllerism

So I've been winning a few free tickets lately to gigs at The Hi-Fi Bar in Melbourne and it's mostly been great, however, watching two old men chatting to each other while their Macbooks playback is a bit boring (I mean you, Bomb The Bass and The Orb) so I thought I'd post this clip from another Hi-Fi gig I attended showing how not to be boring while using a Macbook and a controller.

The band is Underoath (yes, I know, "Christian metalcore" but the tickets were free and the night was great). Keep watching for his near aneurism toward the end.

Active Controllerism:

Another band on the same night was The Smoking Hearts, a bunch of affable lads from England. Here's my tribute to the bass players' hair:

Calvin's Hair:

And just for context here's a full song by The Smoking Hearts from the same night:

(Sorry about the sound but my little camera did it's best)

Sunrise Reed Organ - Ableton Live Sampler/Simpler Instrument

The Sunrise Reed Organ is a two and a bit octave plastic reed organ from Japan. It is battery operated and the reeds are driven by an inbuilt fan, the volume being controlled by the speed of the fan. The organ itself has a true, clear reed sound for a toy instrument but what is so nice about this toy is that the fan is quite loud and a distinctive part of the overall character of the sound.

The Ableton Instrument I have created from it includes a sample of each key and a separate sample of the fan drone that has it's own volume control. The reason for a separate sample of the fan is to make it possible for the fan noise to continue when notes aren't being played. I've also added a couple of simple macro assingments - one for the spread of the note samples to thicken the sound and a wet/dry control for a Simple Delay and a Reverb. There is also a control to select Glide - when in glide mode the instrument suddenly transforms into a pretty nice lo-fi portmanteau synth.

Let me know if you find it fun or useful - I'll be posting some more of my instruments in the coming weeks so check back.

Demo of the sound with various settings. Played on the rack not the original instrument.

Download Sunrise Reed Organ